Reba McEntire Reveals Kenny Rogers Mistake ‘I Totally Regret’
Talking to Apple Music's I Miss…90s Country Radio With Nick Hoffman, McEntire reveals that Rogers was actually her first choice for a duet that she ended up cutting with Vince Gill, and things got awkward when it didn't turn out the way they'd hoped.
"'Heart Won't Lie” was a song we were trying to get a duet on with Kenny Rogers, and the keys just would not work," McEntire says. "Then I took the song, and did the duet with Vince. I didn't tell Kenny, which was my mistake, totally."
Released as the second single from McEntire's It's Your Call album in February of 1993, "The Heart Won't Lie" gave McEntire and Gill a No. 1 hit, and Rogers ended up confronting McEntire about the way she'd handled the situation.
"Kenny approached me at the CMA Awards," she reveals. "He said, 'Why did you do that?' I said, 'Kenny, I am so sorry. We were just going so fast. It's a great, wonderful song. I never even considered coming back, and talking to you about that, and that's one of the things I totally regret.' I hugged his neck, and I told him I was terribly sorry. But I did not do that maliciously."
McEntire and Rogers became close friends when he asked her to appear in his 1991 TV movie The Gambler Returns: The Luck of the Draw. The request came months after the singer had lost eight members of her band and entourage in a plane crash, and in September of 2020, she told Taste of Country and other media that Rogers had "saved my sanity" with the offer.
"I was still in a state of disbelief and not knowing what I’m gonna do moving forward after the plane crash," she said.
The pair remained friends until the end of Rogers' life. He died in March of 2020 at the age of 81, and McEntire turned to social media to pay her respects, writing, "Kenny, Go rest high on that mountain. Please tell mama and daddy hi for me. Thank you for your friendship and your love. We are going to miss you but we are so happy you’re singing with the Angels in heaven. Can't wait to see you again one of these days. Rest in peace my friend."
McEntire's interview on Apple Music's I Miss…90s Country Radio With Nick Hoffman is slated to air in full on Friday (June 11) at 9PM ET, and it will be available on demand anytime after that.
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